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Old 07-21-2009, 01:19 AM   #61
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There was a time when I had the time and energy to build my own furniture, and furnished about half my place with the fruit of my labor. Of course because I was building it myself I tended to overengineer rather than try to get away with the minimum strength possible. I think this factor, lack of engineering, is actually what makes most "old solid" furniture so reliable. People overbuilt because they didn't know any other way.

But I must admit a certain feeling of regret to having built my own stuff. It's heavier and harder to move than Ikea style furniture, so it tends to tie me down. The moving cost for long distances would be significantly greater than the cost of buying new (or craigslist) furniture. And of course there's the sentimental value, "I can't freecycle that, I built that".

If worse came to worse and I needed to move halfway across the country to a lower cost of living zone, my handbuilt furniture would be an anchor weighing me down. It also tends to keep me tied to particular floorplans and in one case was a big factor in a home purchase.

Given that the average family moves every seven years, I'm not so convinced that buying 100 year furniture is so sensible.

A while back I remember trying to sell a super solid Singer sewing machine table that was a hand me down. It was such a thing of beauty, but nobody has any need for sewing machine tables anymore, so it was basically unsaleable. Certainly the same technological obsolence issues plague computer desks and TV stands.

I knew someone who spent thousands of dollars on a beautiful new Quaker solid oak dining room table, which probably would last 100 years. Then they sold it for pennies on the dollar a few years later, moving to a new home where it wouldn't fit.

Perhaps craigslist will help furniture circulate more. Posting and browsing photos online is a great advance over driving all over town to garage sales and classified ads, where 95% of the items you look at are not even close to what you want.

As for me, I'm sticking with higher-end ikea and craigslist for my purchases.

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Old 07-21-2009, 05:34 AM   #62
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My pet peve is baby furniture, lots of it such as night stands are made out of pressed
cardboard, if it says wood it is pressed sawdust. Put a screw into it and it splits, very dangerous crap. Needs to say solid wood.
Other peve is regulaar furniture, made in china or vietnam, but the prices are like
it is made out of solid wood and from North Carolina.
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Old 07-21-2009, 10:12 AM   #63
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Originally Posted by mf15 View Post
My pet peve is baby furniture, lots of it such as night stands are made out of pressed
cardboard, if it says wood it is pressed sawdust. Put a screw into it and it splits, very dangerous crap
What is the desired lifespan of baby furniture? As a parent, I can't see using most of the stuff more than a couple of years. Maybe a few more years if one has many children.

Given the salvage value of used furniture, there doesn't seem to be a good reason to pay a lot of money for high quality baby furniture based solely on financial reasons. Maybe aesthetics though.

I think the most important consideration in selection of appropriate goods is finding something that meets your needs without greatly exceeding them.
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Old 07-21-2009, 10:19 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
Have you talked to your ins co? I recall a horror story about something along these lines, and the ins co would not pay, saying that if they were informed of the problem earlier, they could have had it fixed for much less.

That may not apply here, but you might want to look into it and make sure you are protected.
The settlement issues have been here since we bought the place 6 years ago. Probably a combination of settlement and old wood framing that changes slightly with air temps and humidity levels throughout the year.

Our insurance doesn't cover ground subsidence in any event. And there hasn't been an identifiable "cause" to have the insurance company pay a claim. As far as I can tell the house is structurally sound and no increase in cracks or separation has been observed other than the periodic oscillation of separations with a period of many months or perhaps a year.
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Old 07-21-2009, 11:51 AM   #65
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Old 07-23-2009, 07:17 AM   #66
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insurance defense law firms are paid by insurance companies. Rates are low, the insurance companies look at bills for anything they can deny, and the emphasis is to get it done as cheap as possible.
So true. Some (most?) insurers now use computer software to review accounts, automatically disallowing legal fees when certain words are used. So docketing becomes a game, employing euphemisms that won't get picked up by the software.

Well, I've had it with IKEA.... I did like there cafeteria. Nice touch!
"To know what you prefer, instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive". Robert Louis Stevenson, An Inland Voyage (1878)
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:09 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by FinanceDude View Post
You can never go wrong with solid wood!

Freebird, no comments from the peanut gallery.......
I was on summer vacation, so this one got by me. Darn...darn...darn

"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney
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